Whether you’re looking to fully refurbish your kitchen, or just to give your floor a makeover, what material you choose can have a big impact on the style of your home. And luckily (or unluckily, depending on how much you like making decisions) there are plenty of options available. Such as...
- Hardwood floor
- Laminate flooring
- Natural stone
- Rubber flooring
Not only that, a lot of these materials come in various patterns, shades, and textures. Meaning there’s no way you won’t find at least one option that’s perfect for your home.
But which material tops the rest? And which will work best for your household? We asked our experts to reveal all…
When money isn’t an issue, hardwood flooring wins everytime. This household classic makes a wonderful addition to any kitchen, and has proven throughout the decades to be an irresistible classic. Unlike their laminated counterparts, hardwood floors can be easily repaired and last a lifetime. Because of this, having them installed can see a boost to your house price.
Of course, they’re not perfect. They’re an expensive option, so can eat up a lot of your budget. They can also warp in too damp areas. So you’ll need to be careful how much exposure this floor gets to water.
If you like the look of hardwood floor, but don’t fancy the price tag, a more affordable option is good old laminate. With the planks clicking easily together, their simply design means you could even install them yourself. Plus, because they’re made through photography, laminate floors come in a whole host of different styles and colours. You can even get them made up to resemble stone.
However, do be cautious about the long term value of this flooring. Cheap laminates can often warp to leave gaps between the panels. And because it’s hard to match the prints, if repairs are needed, you’ll likely need to replace the whole floor. This gives them a shelf-life of only 10-12 years.
Much like hardwood, this is a solid classic that many homeowners still can’t resist. Unlike hardwood, however, they’re super versatile and can be styled in either a traditional, simplistic, or modern fashion. You can even play with size, going for bold large tiles, or smaller pieces. Perfect for any colour scheme or trend you plan for your space.
If you do go for tile, consider how big your grout lines are. These can be difficult to keep clean, so if you don’t want a high maintenance floor, the smaller these are the better.
A new kid on the block, concrete has been rising in popularity in recent years for it’s bold contemporary edge. However, many are surprised by how versatile this floor can be, with the concrete coming in a variety of shades. Not only that, as the floor works both inside and outside, the flooring can be carried through into the patio area. Creating a lovely sense of connection between your home and the garden, especially when used in conjunction with something like bi-fold doors.
Those prone to cold feet might want to watch out from this floor type, as they’re not the nicest to experience without some slippers in the morning. Saying that, you could install concrete in conjunction with underfloor heating, as this material warms up well with a little push from below.
Another heavy hitter in Britain’s kitchens is the classic stone flooring. This can be laid out in a variety of styles, and the large choice of stone means you can play around with both colour and texture too. Keep things simple with matching squares, or go for a more rustic touch by laying stone in more natural shapes.
If you do opt for stone floors, watch out for it’s porous nature. This can lead to unsightly wear and tear, though can be countered with some protective sealants.
If you’re looking to cut down on costs, vinyl could be the one to you. It’s affordable and comes in a wide range of patterns. It is a little tricky to install, so unlike it’s fellow cost-effective option laminate, you’ll need to get a professional in to get it set up in your home.
If you do go for this option, make sure your subfloor is flawless, as any bumps will be picked up by the material and become at risk of gouging.
Not so common in the UK, cork can be a bold statement, especially when paired with modern kitchen designs. Cork also has some surprising features, such as it’s naturally bacteria-resistant and is a fantastic eco-friendly material.
Watch out though, cork isn’t as durable as hardwood or tile, and isn’t as water resistant, so we likely need replacing after 10-15 years.
Rubber is lovely cushy material, that makes a great option for kitchens, thanks to its water resistance and easy to clean surface. What’s more, it’s a good defense against fire spreading, and can even be recycled - perfect for those of you who are eco-conscious.
However, some people find the smell of the material a little off putting, and it can become stained from oils. And as a fairly cheap material, you might find it doesn’t stand the test of time when faced with daily wear and tear.